Favourite Things: “I’m back in the city that means so much to me”

Peter Haris, Head at Birkdale school in Sheffield on his favourite bench in the grounds
Peter Haris, Head at Birkdale school in Sheffield on his favourite bench in the grounds

Peter Harris has returned to Sheffield to take up the role of headmaster at the city’s Birkdale School.  The 49-year old married father-of-three studied at the University of Sheffield and worked in Dinnington and Worksop before joining the teaching staff at Birkdale in 1998.

Ten years ago, he moved to the south coast as a Vice Principal in Bournemouth before becoming
Principal of Ewell Castle School in Surrey for the last 5 years.
He returned to Birkdale in January, back to the city that means so much to him.
Peak District
I love to go walking in the Peak District with my family and our recent addition – our cockerpoo, Yala.
My favourite spot is Higger Tor – just looking at the view and enjoying the space and fresh air –
following by a refreshing (and well-deserved!) mug of tea at the Outside café in Hathersage.
I am loving being able to enjoy the view in reality now as, when I lived in the South of England, I had
to rely on mindfulness to transport me to my favourite place – which I did frequently.
Sheffield University
I studied for my teaching qualifications at the University of Sheffield and have always enjoyed the
wonderful facilities they offer students and alumni.
I am looking to re-join the amazing facility that is the S10 Health Centre as I was previously a
member and enjoyed swimming in the Sheffield University pool.
The Well Church – Ecclesall Road
The Well is a Church for the whole of Sheffield and beyond, with a particular heart for life around
Ecclesall Road - an intersection between students, young adults, businesses, the poor and young
As committed Christians, Church life and community is very important to me and my wife, Caroline. I
have known the Church leader, Nick since 1996 and subsequently his wife Marjorie, we are firm
friends. My Faith and my Church are extremely important to me.
Birkdale School
I met an Old Birkdalian on my first day at University. We became firm friends and were each other’s
‘Best Men’. His parents still live in Ecclesall.

The Climbing Works

The Climbing Works

Little did I know that would be the beginning of a long relationship with Birkdale and that one day I
would return as Head Master.
I have travelled to Nepal five times with the annual Nepal trip run by Birkdale. Now in its 19th year,
this has always been a life-changing trip for the staff and pupils and one we as a school, and as a
wider city, should be extremely proud of. I plan to go again next year.
Friends in Sheffield
Caroline and I have many friends in Sheffield made through working at Birkdale, our Church and
through our children. We are looking forward to catching up with all of them in the weeks and
months ahead as we explore in detail how the city has changed since we left.
The Climbing Works
Now that I am back in Sheffield, I would like to get back into my climbing which I haven’t managed to
do for around five years. I plan to go to The Climbing Works which has been highly recommended to
me by a friend. Ours is a city filled with hidden gems, and I look forward to visiting this one.
We love being back in Sheffield and, in particular, near to Broomhill where we can walk to the shops.
There is a huge variety and we can buy most things locally – although I do miss Waterstones.
I visited Michael at Hair All Day recently and was delighted that he remembered me after 10 years
absence. We had a good catch up!
I have also visited Proove in Broomhill to celebrate my daughters GCSE results which was lovely -
with the added bonus of being walking distance from home! This has definitely become a firm family